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What is the APA?

What is the Anglican Province of America?
 
This Province is
…Anglican.
   Anglican means of England. The Church came to Britain in very early days. The English Church was a national church within the great Western Church. Over 450 years ago the Church of England was affected by the Reformation. At the time of the Reformation, the English Church separated from that part of the Church we now call the Roman Catholic Church. This separation was achieved in a unique way. The Church of England remained a Catholic Church, in part, by retaining Episcopal government. By reforming itself,  it became a Protestant or Evangelical Church. When the American branch of the Church of England became independent, it established a Democratic Church.
   The English Reformers translated the old worship books then being used into English in what is known as the Book of Common Prayer. Anglicans are Liturgical Christians.
 
This Province is...
A Church.
There is only one Church. The Church is the visible sign of the called company of baptized believers who
are members of the Church, which contains both the
living and departed.
A Province is where the Church is situated geographically. Provinces are formed by geographically contiguous dioceses, which are groupings of local parishes. The term province comes to us from when dioceses were grouped together according the Provinces of the Roman Empire. Our province of the Church happens to be in America.

This Province is…
...American.
   Many of the first colonists were members of the Church of England. They founded parishes in the original thirteen colonies. Many of the Founding Fathers of the United States were Anglicans. After the Revolution, the Church of England (Anglican) parishes formed the Protestant Episcopal Church. Gradually, Anglican churches throughout the world gained local independence but remained a union of churches called the Anglican Communion. For many years these churches were united by a common faith, a common form of church government, and a common worship.
  
 In recent years, member churches have tended to stress their independence rather than their unity. Differences in belief and worship have created tensions that unhappily divide Anglicans. This Province is an Anglican province, which seeks to be faithful to the ideals and faith of the first Episcopalians and their descendants.

This Province is...
...Catholic.
   Catholic means the Church established by our Lord Himself, which is always served by clergy who are successors of the Apostles, who administer the Sacraments, which our Lord gave to the Church. The faith of the Church is summarized in the three historic Creeds, Apostles, Nicene, and Athanasian, and in the teachings defined by the Early Church.

This Province is...
...Episcopal.
   The word Episcopal means of Bishops . Our Lord Jesus Christ sent His disciples into the world. They were called Apostles, or “sent men.” The Apostles added ministers to their ranks to care for the growing Church. These men became known as bishops. Our bishops are descendants of the Apostles and of the first Episcopal bishops in the United States.

This Province is...
...Evangelical.
   The word Evangelical means of the Gospel. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is found in the Holy Bible, God's Word written by inspired people. The Bible is the book of the Church. Anglicans cherish the Scriptures. They are read in public worship. Our Prayer Book is Bible based. Its words echo the teachings, words, and expressions of the Holy Scriptures.

This Province is...
...Liturgical
   Liturgy means hard work. We show our duty to God and our love for Him in corporate worship. The 1928 American edition of the Book of Common Prayer is the official liturgy of this Province. It is basically the same form of service used by the first settlers. Many scholars maintain that this book, together with the King James Version of the Bible (an Anglican translation), has affected the English language and the spiritual life of the English speaking people of the world more than any other published work.

 This Province is...
...Democratic.
   The Protestant Episcopal Church was the first Anglican Church to restore to the laity the rights and duties they enjoyed in the Early Church. At every level of church life, in the parish and in the diocese, the laity share with the clergy the duty of determining the policies governing the day-to-day life of the church.

This Province is...
...Traditional.
   By traditional we mean that we do not allow the current winds of public and societal opinion to alter that Faith which we have received from our forefathers as contained in the Holy Bible, the writings of the Early Church, and the Book of Common Prayer.

This Province is...
...Independent.
   While the Church is one, it adapts itself to differing
cultures and circumstances. Anglicans believe in the
freedom of individual dioceses and provinces to respond to the needs of the particular people they serve.
Independence does not mean that a parish or diocese
or any other level of church government has the right to change the Faith.
   Each congregation owns its own property. Neither
the bishops nor the conventions of this Church make
political decisions for the people of the Church. Christians are bound to make their political decisions and
exercise their rights in the light of the Gospel.